If I’m bringing you along for the ride then I should at least start at the birth of the Robin Randle Stories. At the time I was struggling, to put it lightly, with delayed onset Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. The personal particulars aren’t important but what is important is the fact that PTSD is an indescribable thing. I can’t come up with the words that would impart to you the full scope of what it is like to be trapped inside yourself not knowing who the hell you are anymore. At the time I was working on a project I call Mercy Lake. I still want to develop that story but what happened was Robin Randle. She was supposed to be a waitress at a diner in the town of Mercy Lake. I didn’t feel she was going to become a major character in the story but I was having a hell of a time defining who she was at all.
I have been to a few writers workshops where the topic of social media was covered. In the past film companies used to send their stars out to appear at theatres all over the country when a new picture was coming out. It was an opportunity for movie theatre goers of that time to do what we call today a meet and greet. As the studio system in Hollywood fell apart the hold studios had over their stars evaporated the days of film stars touring the country to meet their fans ended. Today the film companies have the stars show up on late night television as a promotional tool and if it is in L.A. or New York they will appear at film premieres and that’s about it.
So where do ideas come from? I don’t think that is the question. Ideas are everywhere. All you have to do is get out of your home, get off your phone and look at what’s going on around you. Keep a notebook with you and write things down. I find there are way more ideas than time to develop them. What I wonder about is all the stuff that comes after the idea. Suddenly you are writing about people that never existed that you sometimes put in real places and sometimes made up places. The book I’m writing now takes place on Block Island. As I write I need to step inside the world I’m creating. I have to feel the air, smell the air, touch the world my characters are living in. That means reading about the place, gathering facts, maps, histories and anything else that might matter. I make a lot of notes, flag pages in books and basically devote a shelf in the library to all the topics involved in the story I’m writing.
I’m working with PR folks getting a PR blitz ready for my latest novel. I find I have rewritten the pitch copy about a million times now and think I’m slowly descending into insanity. Every time I change it I have to go to all these places on websites, Facebook etc to update the copy. LIFE. Use to be so much simpler. Just FYI as of 9AM of March 27th here is the copy. Let me know if you like it. Is it getting better?
I hate to grumble. You know, complain about things. But when I see or hear stuff that upsets me, well just ask my wife. She will turn up the radio if we’re in the car. At home she switches on the TV. I can take a hint. Really. Thing is her actions don’t stop the grumbling in my head. I just go underground.